Zachary T. Sampson, General Assignment Reporter

Zachary T. Sampson

General Assignment Reporter

I'm a general assignment reporter, which means I cover pretty much anything depending on the day. Think of me like a super utility player. Local, state, national, crime, weather, politics, and so on. I'm fascinated by where we're from -- how places shape us and how we shape them. I aim to tell stories that matter to you now, or will, or should. One day that might involve a police horse that paints, another how county officials spend your tax dollars. I'm from Rhode Island and will talk to you about it. I've coached youth baseball -- yes, the loud one. Okay, maybe I was checking the score on my phone under the table. I'm sorry. Call me with anything. I'm friendlier than my face suggests.

For boy with autism, Tampa ‘Sensory Santa’ gives family photo without fuss

Yahir Manuel Charneco Roldán, 6, stretches to catch a glimpse of a TV screen playing holiday cartoons near the atrium where families lined up for a visit with Santa on Sunday Nov. 24 at International Plaza in Tampa. The early event at the mall was for families with sensory-sensitive children like Yahir, who has autism. MARTHA ASENCIO RHINE  |  Times
Before the mall opens, without the bright lights and crowds, a family gets its Christmas moment.

Money raised for Citrus County’s New York Times subscription will go back to donors

The New York Times newspaper on the shelf at the Citrus County Library Lakes Region at 1511 Druid Rd. on Thursday, Nov. 7, 2019 in Inverness. The Citrus County Commison was looking to eliminate the cost of the New York Times digital subscriptions because they say it is
After Citrus commissioners voted down the digital subscription, library leaders say they cannot accept thousands of dollars from GoFundMe pages.

Citrus County commissioners vote down New York Times digital subscriptions

United States Air Force veteran Daniel Carmichael, of Inverness, shares his opinion before a meeting of the Board of County Commissioners of Citrus County on Tuesday, November 19, 2019, at the Citrus County Courthouse in Inverness, where the Citrus County Commission is expected to render a decision on whether to get digital subscriptions for the New York Times for all 70,000 of the county library cardholders. DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  TImes
After two hours of debate, a motion to move forward with digital subscriptions for library cardholders fails 3-2.

Employee killed in targeted shooting outside Pinellas Park Walmart, police say

Forensic Science investigators with the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office collect evidence at the scene of the shooting behind the Walmart Neighborhood Market, 6900 US Hwy 19 N, in Pinellas Park, on Friday, November 15, 2019. DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Tampa Bay Times
The victim was a Walmart employee. He was on break at the time of the shooting.

Man kills his grandfather in Hernando County, deputies say

Check for the latest breaking news and updates. tmccarty  |  times staff
Timothy Gaffney, 20, faces charges including second degree murder.